How do I keep my clients on track in the New Year and maintain their motivation?

It’s no secret that January is a busy month for the fitness industry. New Year’s resolutions are in full swing, motivation levels are at an all-time high, and clients are willing to do what it takes to reach their goals.  Then February comes… and more often than not, that fire that was lit inside of so many people seems to go away.

You may have even seen this happen with some of your clients in the past.  No matter what you do, they start off strong and then disappear. Of course, every client is different, so there could be a million reasons why this happens.  However, I am going to break down three of the most common reasons why New Year’s motivation is lost, based on my experiences, and how you can help your clients to push past those barriers.

How To Help Clients ReFocus and ReConnect With Themselves!

Ask any experienced Personal Trainer and they will tell you: How you start or finish a session plays a key role in the overall client experience.

With that said, here’s a simple mindfulness practice you can carry out with a client to finish a training session on a positive note.

Or if they arrive somewhat frenzied or distracted, it’s a great way to help them refocus and commit to the session ahead!

The Theory:

This practice can help them unwind, rebalance and let go of worries, concerns and negative feelings that accumulate throughout the day.

When we cultivate and amplify positive feelings, we benefit from their nourishing effects on our body and psyche.

Why Your Clients May Not Be Able To Feel The Exercise You Are Doing With Them?

Have you ever had a client that just couldn’t feel the exercise where you wanted them to?  Every time you would do a chest press, all they could feel were their deltoids.  Or if you did deadlifts, they only felt their hamstrings, never their glutes.  You tried cueing them differently or changing how they would do the exercise, but still, they just couldn’t feel the muscles you were trying to work.

As a personal trainer, this can be a frustrating thing.  You want your clients to have a great experience when they workout with you, and they do, for the most part.  But you want it to be even better.  You want them to feel how you feel when you workout–strong, capable, energized.  And yet, despite your best efforts, they don’t.  Something is still off.

Muscles Remember What the Mind Forgets

For anyone who wishes to start a fitness program, here’s something to remember: Your movement is recorded in your body AKA ‘muscle memory’.

Yes, you heard correctly…

Perhaps you knew that – or maybe you forgot – but movements from your entire life are filed away in your connective tissue.

Let that be a comfort as you begin a fitness program. Maybe you haven’t exercised for many years, but you were an athlete in high school.

As you rev up your exercise program, the muscles and the synapses that trigger them will spring back to life: Aha! A brisk walk! Leg activation. Arm-­swinging. Balance. Posture. I remember that!

5 Creative Tips on How to Create a Recharging Habit

As fitness professionals, we can create all sorts of wonderful programs for our clients, but they do no good unless we figure out how to inspire them to take action and maintain new habits. One of my favorite quotes from the great yoga guru Paramhansa Yogananda is “Your trials may be great, but the greatest enemy of yourself is yourself!” In order for people to create a new habit that feels recharging, they have to figure out how to get themselves out of the way.

We commonly talk about developing a buddy system where someone or a class holds you accountable. Or we encourage people to push themselves for a small amount of time when beginning new activities which will automatically develop a habit. We set up calendars, competitions, and offer rewards for accomplishing goals. Below are five creative tips which we do not commonly think about on how to develop a recharging habit.

How To Go About a Motivational Interview

I introduced the key principles behind “Motivational Interviewing” (MI) in my last article: “Getting Clients to Change Their Habits!” and why it can be a valuable tool to add to your skill set.

In this follow-up article, I would like to run through a typical (brief) MI conversation.

A Typical MI Conversation Format:

Start with the usual greetings & introductions

Then set the Agenda and the time you have available together.

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